Cyber Defence in Wales

About Cyber Defence in Wales

Wales has a proud military history and has always punched above its weight in its contribution to the UK's Armed Forces. At strategic locations around the coastline and on its borders are some of the most significant military operations in the MOD, including most of the UK's Cyber Warfare capability.

The Royal Navy provide extensive ship-to-shore comms training across the Bristol Channel and conduct penetration testing on their submarines off the Welsh coast while the Royal Marines have advanced tactical cyber capability in their Reserve detachments in Wales.

The Royal Air Force develop specialist ground-to-air comms capability and penetration test their fast jets as they scream around the Mach Loop in Snowdonia at 500mph just 250ft above the valley floors underneath the giant peaks. 614 Squadron of the RAF Reserves is also a hub for RAF recruitment in Wales seeking candidates for Intelligence and Cyberspace Communications roles as well as scouting talent for the Joint Forces Cyber Units.

The British Army has a wide range of operations in Wales which hosts some of the top training sites, including the Infantry Battle School and the Sennybridge Training Area. Indeed, most British infantry soldiers visit these sites at some stage during their career and the SAS carries out much of its training in Wales's rugged Brecon Beacons. Wales is also home to the Army's Electronic Warfare regiment which also houses the Regular Army Cyber Protection Troops and has the Military Security Operations Centre and the Defence Cyber Training School on its borders. 53 Signal Squadron of the Royal Corps of Signals have been developing the concept of cyber training in the Army Reserve to build tactical cyber protection capability to bolster cyber operations worldwide.

Strategic Command

The Strategic Command (which used to be called the Joint Forces Command) supports the Ministry of Defence (MOD) by making sure that joint capabilities such as medical services, training and education, intelligence and information systems are developed and managed across all 5 of the land, sea, air, space and cyber domains. We also manage overseas joint operations. Through a combination of Regular and Reserve Units the Command provides leadership in the cyber domain for the MOD leading in the information environment for defence and providing the MOD’s information and communication technology systems.

Joint Cyber Units

Originally named the Defence Cyber Operations Group, the Joint Forces Cyber Group (JFCyG) was created in May 2013 and plans and co-ordinates UK cyber warfare operations.

It commands Joint Cyber Units located at GCHQ Cheltenham and MOD Corsham, the Joint Cyber Unit (Reserve) and Information Assurance Units.

The Joint Cyber Unit (Reserve) was established in response to a growing cyber warfare threat and to allow the military to benefit from the expertise of civilian IT specialists.

53 Signal Squadron

Ty Llewellyn Barracks in Cardiff is the home of “The Welsh Signallers”, 53 Signal Squadron “pumdegtri" who have been working with the Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance Units to develop the concept of cyber training in the Army Reserve.

This Unit has a very close relationship with Cyber Wales.

They joined the Ecosystem in 2016 when they hosted their first Cluster meeting, Cluster members have donated networking equipment and software to build a Cyber Training Suite at the Barracks, Cluster members have run training sessions for the soldiers of the Squadron, a number of Cluster members have joined the Army Reserve and now serve with the Squadron and a number of the soldiers of the Squadron have moved jobs to work for Cluster member companies.

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